Elon Musk's Boring Company, an organization that I'm still partially sure is a front for Musk's doomsday bunker, has won a bid to create an underground express transit system from Chicago's O'Hare airport to the city downtown area.
This undated artist's rendering provided by The Boring Company, shows part of a proposed high-speed underground transportation system that will transport passengers from downtown Chicago to O'Hare International Airport. "And we're gonna give commuters a leg up in that race, which means Chicago will have a leg up in the race for the future", said Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
Musk's flagship electric auto company Tesla Inc. struggled last year to turn an annual profit for the first time in its 15 years of doing business.
The project will be entirely privately financed, Musk's company said.
Musk, who started The Boring Company in 2016 with the goal of combatting LA's "soul-destroying" traffic, is promising to make tunneling cheaper and faster, and to radically rethink the vehicles carrying passengers.
Boring Co's proposal involves 16-passenger electric pods that ferry passengers at speeds of up to 100 mph, enabling riders to travel between the city's central business district and the airport in 12 minutes for an estimated price of $20-25 per ticket. This new train would take less than 15 minutes.
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Officials from city and Boring have stated that it's too soon to estimate a timeframe or final cost for this project, but have stated that Boring will be fronting the bill.
The $250 million station beneath Block 37 was first envisioned as the hub of an express train system linking downtown to both O'Hare and Midway airports, but was abandoned in 2011 while only half-finished, after running well over budget.
A lease deal will need to be struck with the CTA to use its Block 37 station, and Rivkin said he "expects" that Boring will pay for usage. The Chicago Express is a billion dollar project, but the technology is still unproven.
In May, Musk said a tunnel built under a Los Angeles suburbto test a transportation system was nearly complete and that the public would be offered free rides in a few months. Last year, Gregory Hauser, a civil engineer at Dragados who recently managed the replacement of Seattle's Alaskan Way Viaduct-the largest underground highway project in the US-said what The Boring Company attempting is on par with the challenge faced by SpaceX.